Lori's Book Nook

So calming…

Posted on: July 22, 2006

He’s in my ‘daily’ bookmark file, although I don’t go every day…but I should. His rough, low voice, words of wisdom and culture, and measured reading of poetry warm me, and start my day off right.

“Who?” I hear you ask…Garrison Keillor and his daily Writer’s Almanac.

He’s now put out 2 books of the collected poems he reads on the air, entitled Good Poems and Good Poems for Hard Times, and, in my opinion, they are great collections (In the opinion of the Academy of American Poets, at poets.org, his collection is only pretty good, if for the “delightful diversity in poets featured”…)

But think about this collection. Here is a man who is incredibly popular in the USA (and surprisingly, also in Canada), who, every day, does a 5 minute radio show that is listened to on NPR across the country, usually over breakfast. Every single day, he gives a talk about literary milestones as a preamble to reading a poem — often one that is relevant to events of the day. People listen.

Let me repeat that. People listen. To Poetry. Isn’t that a great thing?

Keillor chooses poems that exhibit, in his words: “stickiness, memorability, [which] is one sign of a good poem.” Poems that will make you pause to think as you drink your morning coffee, putter along in traffic, or surf the morning news (I listen online).

And I never fail to choke up at his trademarked closing:

“Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.”


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Book Discussion Pages

Here on the Book Nook you can discuss: The Fifth Business by Robertson Davies, as well as the next two books in the Deptford Trilogy, The Manticore and World of Wonders, and if that's not enough for you, see what's up on the forums at BookTalk.org!
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